The urge to visit Denver has been pretty strong for us lately. With its large downtown area full of museums, gardens, parks, beer and even vegan food, this city seems to have everything we could ever ask for! Figuring out what to do in Denver is hard, but we definitely found some fun activities!
What to do in Denver…
Deciding what to do was almost impossible with all the options, so AJ and I used the power of recommendations from a friend who used to live in the area. We made sure to include only our favorite parts of the trip, so if you’re looking to be in Denver soon, definitely try these suggestions out. : )
the ART, a hotel
Located in the Arts District of downtown Denver, you’ll find a modern gem called the ART. We knew we wanted to stay somewhere unique and this hotel stood out with its minimalist design and perfect location. They even have a museum that extends into the elevator, where you’ll find some really interesting videos playing on a TV.
Can we just take a moment and appreciate how amazing this bathroom is? Let me tell you, I’ve stayed at plenty of hotels (especially in Las Vegas, where I live) and the ART has the best robe I’ve ever used. The inside is so soft and fluffy, I didn’t want to take it off!
Things to Do
Denver Botanical Gardens
This gorgeous garden got a ton of love from us during this trip, and we owed a lot of that to the perfect weather. During the summer, we’ve gotten so used to bracing ourselves every time we leave a climate controlled building, but the weather was actually better outside than indoors.
We spent the better half of the day just walking around and exploring, and probably would’ve stayed for longer if our bellies didn’t start growling! The do have a place to eat here, but we felt we needed to venture out to look for our meal.
New Belgium Brewery
Okay, so we kind of LOVE beer. Even though there are plenty of great choices in the Denver area for beer, it was a no brainer that we’d be driving out to Fort Collins for New Belgium. Fat Tire was my first love when it comes to beer and things haven’t changed much. 😉
While neither of us had been on a brewery tour before, we new this one was something special. We were lucky to even get in as most of their tour spots were taken for the whole month, and we didn’t even have an official spot on the tour. We signed up for the waiting list, and with a little luck, got in.
On the tour, you learn about the compassionate nature of the company as well as misconceptions about how you should drink your beer. Afterwards, we’d both gained a deeper appreciation for the company. If you have enough time, you really should check this place out!
Denver Cat Company
Before the flight home, we decided to just walk around downtown aimlessly and found ourselves accidentally (totally not an accident) heading over to a cat cafe. We missed our little fur babies and couldn’t help ourselves from lovin’ on these cuties.
While I wish they had some espresso available, the kitties were definitely enough for me to leave with a smile on my face. This was our first cat cafe, and won’t be the last.
Where to get Grub
This spot was recommended by one of AJ’s friends, and wow does she having good taste! Out of the vegan restaurants we visit during this trip, this is the one you MUST go to. We ordered some buffalo chicken, the macro plate, and their summer curry dish. The flavors were well balanced and everything perfectly cooked.
We were both digging the laid back atmosphere and the friendly servers. Outside of our window, we could see people hanging out in the grass. One lady even had her bunny playing in the grass on a leash!
Little Man ICE CREAM
It seems as if no trip to Denver is complete without visiting this little ice cream stand. AJ got a raspberry with chocolate chip ice cream and I got the lemon poppy seed with lavender. The verdict? The lemon poppy seed lavender is exactly what you’ll need on a hot day. It’s vegan friendly and the flavor isn’t as on the nose as most desserts. Take a lick and you’ll experience lavender aromas so delicious, you’ll want a second cone to go!
While we were in Denver, we wanted to try out one upscale spot so we chose Ocean Prime. We were given the option upon arrival to sit on the second floor, out on the patio, or within the main restaurant on the first floor. Normally we go for the patio but this time around we wanted a nice elevated city view.
When we got to our seats, we found all the windows were wide open, letting in a cool summer breeze. It was absolute perfection! To tie it all together, the restaurant decor was beautiful. While waiting for our food, we just relaxed and watched people wandering around downtown.
For our meal, we ordered the calamari, pork chop and blackened fish. Everything was flavorful and well cooked. I was pleasantly surprised by the Asian twist they put on our calamari.
Denver Biscuit Co
Remember how we told you that we only include our favorite parts of the trip? Yep, we do, and we LOVE food. Don’t go thinking that we love just any food though! We tried plenty of grub during this trip and can safely say Denver is a total foodie town. This place is absolutely overflowing with delicious food and Denver Biscuit Co was exactly what we needed to start our day.
You know that there is something so right about the food you’re eating when the food has convinced you to enjoy something you thought you didn’t enjoy. Like wine, if you think you don’t like you, you probably just haven’t tried enough of it. ; )
We were a bit apprehensive to try this place as it has so much hype across Denver travel guides. The original plan was actually to check out another spot, but Snooze is conveniently located by the train from the airport and we were STARVING. Hoping for the best, we walked right on in.
To get a balanced idea of their menu, we decided to get something sweet and also something savory. I gotta say, the menu design is brilliant. They give you so many ways to customize your meal in the easiest way possible, flights. The sweet dish we got was an assortment of pancakes and the savory was eggs Benedict.
We couldn’t believe how good the food was when we got it! So if you can only go to one place for your Denver brunch, it has to be Snooze. There’s no way around it. We went to some other brunch spots, and this place takes the cake.
Union Lodge No. 1
Welcome to the best dang bar I’ve been to in my LIFE! Seriously, these bartenders know their stuff! If you’re looking for a unique bar experience, this is your place. Every cocktail is so perfectly crafted, and you might even get a little fire show to go with it!
Still Not Sure What to do in Denver?
This was our first visit to Denver and won’t be our last. Like Scottsdale, it is a beautiful city with a lot to offer. There was so much to do and see in this incredible city. I think it’ll take many more visits to really get a feel of what this city is about. : ) If you’re deciding what to do in Denver on your upcoming trip, definitely consider this list of activities or check out the Denver website.
A huge thank you to the ART, a hotel for hosting our stay in Denver. Your hotel is a truly memorable masterpiece. As always, all opinions are my own.
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